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Hendersons - Barristers' Chambers

Christopher Adams

Call
2014

Christopher has a broad practice with a particular focus on commercial litigation, product liability and health & safety.

He graduated from Trinity College, Cambridge with a Double First in English before studying at the Royal Academy of Music and working for several years as a classical singer. He speaks German and has a good working knowledge of French and Italian, which makes him well-placed to act in disputes with an international dimension.

Christopher was placed first in his year for the CPE in Legal Studies at London South Bank University, and was an Astbury Scholar of the Middle Temple.

He is also an accredited mediator.

 

Expertise


Commercial Disputes & Chancery

Christopher acts in commercial litigation, arbitration and enforcement proceedings, frequently with an international dimension. He has advised and represented corporate clients in a range of commercial disputes involving issues of contractual interpretation, fraudulent misrepresentation, economic torts, conflict of laws, jurisdiction and foreign law. He has also advised in relation to contempt of court proceedings.

Instructions include

  • LCIA arbitration proceedings on behalf of 4 corporate carry vehicles in a £23 million dispute with a bank (as a junior, details confidential).
  • An application to compel German witnesses to give evidence in support of LCIA arbitration proceedings seated in London pursuant to the Arbitration Act 1996 and the Taking of Evidence Regulation, including attending hearings in Germany (details confidential).
  •  Advising on jurisdiction in respect of a tortious claim for pure financial loss pursuant to the Rome II Regulation involving companies registered in both EU Member States and non-Member States (details confidential).
  • An LCIA arbitration for breach of a settlement agreement (as a junior, details confidential).
  • Advising in relation to implied contractual terms and the admissibility of foreign evidence of previous convictions in civil claims.
  •  Applications for interim freezing injunctions, third party and pre-action disclosure, third party debt orders, non-party and interim costs orders, Jordan orders, strike out, summary judgment and relief from sanctions.
  • Insolvency and bankruptcy proceedings.
  • Applications to restore dissolved companies.
  •  Advising foreign defendants in relation to validity of service out of the jurisdiction.
  •  Abbey Forwarding (In Liquidation) v HMRC [2015]: assisting Leigh-Ann Mulcahy QC and Adam Heppinstall in an inquiry as to damages on a cross-undertaking given by HMRC as part of a provisional liquidation order (as a pupil).

In 2019 he co-authored an article in the Journal of International Arbitration on compelling evidence from witnesses located abroad in support of arbitration proceedings seated in London:

https://3yf6pp3bqg8c3rycgf1gbn9w-wpengine.netdna-ssl.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/Journal-of-International-Arbitration-No-Man-Is-An-Island.pdf

 

Group Actions & Mass Tort claims

Christopher is regularly instructed as a junior on behalf of major international companies in a wide range of multi-party product liability, mass torts and environmental claims. He has extensive experience of issues relating to service out of the jurisdiction, jurisdictional challenges and conflict of laws.

He was led by Charles Gibson QC and Geraint Webb QC in the Supreme Court in Vedanta Resources Plc & another v Lungowe & others [2019] UKSC 20, a landmark decision on parent company liability in the context of mass tort claims.

Instructions include:

  • Acting for a German distributor of medical devices defending multiple claims under the Consumer Protection Act 1987 and in negligence (as a junior).
  • Representing an English-domiciled parent company defending mass claims arising from the operations of its African subsidiaries (as a junior)

 

Representative cases

grid list
  • Vedanta Resources Plc & another v Lungowe & others [2019] UKSC 20
  • Volkswagen NOx Emissions Group Litigation

Insurance

Christopher has advised insurers on matters of contractual interpretation in relation to a major international coverage dispute valued at around £17 million (as a junior).

Health & Safety, Inquests and Public Inquiries

Christopher has a wide breadth of experience in health & safety matters including court proceedings and pre-trial advice, submissions and investigations. Having previously worked as a paralegal at an international firm of solicitors, he has experience of advising a range of clients on all aspects of the health & safety investigation and trial process, including those from the railway, education, restaurant, transport and construction industries.

Instructions include

  • Acting for the defendant rail welding company in a five week Crown Court trial, prosecuted by the Office of Rail and Road, arising from a double fatality in the course of work-related driving (led by Prashant Popat QC)
  • An application to challenge the prosecution jurisdiction of the Office of Rail and Road, including an appeal before the Court of Appeal Criminal Division (led by Prashant Popat QC)
  •  Representing a defendant at a Crown Court sentencing for a breach of s3(1) HSWA involving a risk of carbon monoxide poisoning arising from the accidental removal and bricking up of a live gas flue.
  • Pre-Trial Reviews in the Crown Court
  •  Advising the port owner on a prospective HSE prosecution arising from a fatal accident to a security guard at the Port of Immingham (as a junior to Toby Riley Smith QC).
  •  Advising the port owner on a prospective HSE prosecution in relation to a non-fatal accident at the Port of Ipswich (as a junior to Toby Riley Smith QC).
  •  Representing corporate interested persons at inquest proceedings.
  •  Advising in proceedings relating to the Grenfell Tower Inquiry.

EU, Competition & Public Law

Christopher has been instructed as a junior to Alan Dashwood QC and in his own right on a range of EU, competition and public law matters.

Instructions include

  • Advising on the effects of the CJEU decision in Slovak Republic v Achmea BV on the enforceability of ICSID awards made pursuant to intra-EU arbitrations arising under the Energy Charter Treaty.
  • Advising on the alleged anti-competitive effects under EU law of an exclusive purchasing obligation in a contract for the supply of biofuel.
  • Advising on the scope and jurisdictional reach of the European Arrest Warrant system and Framework Decision 2008/909/JHA on the application of the principle of mutual recognition for judgments imposing custodial sentences or measures involving deprivation of liberty.
  • Advising a foreign businessman on an application to the European Court of Human rights in respect of infringement of his Article 6 rights during a criminal trial in Romania.
  • Advising in relation to judicial review proceedings as a means of challenging decisions of the Financial Ombudsman.

Property

Christopher is regularly instructed on behalf of public sector and private clients in a range of landlord and tenant and neighbour disputes. He has extensive experience of real property proceedings in the courts and the First Tier Tribunal (Property Chamber) involving breach of covenant, rights of way and boundary disputes. He has also appeared in the Magistrates’ court in statutory nuisance proceedings under the Environmental Protection Act 1990.

Instructions include

  • Acting for a commercial landlord in a dispute with its former property management company.
  • Advising in relation to health & safety duties, building regulations and breach of freehold covenants in a dispute over the obstruction of a supermarket’s fire escape route over a neighbouring property.
  • Possession claims, including against trespassers and those involving housing disrepairs.
  • Defending clients in a private prosecution for statutory nuisance in the Magistrates’ Court.
  • Applying to restore dissolved companies to the Register of Companies in order to transfer real property assets.
  • Advising a leaseholder in relation to a claim against the freeholder for unreasonably withheld consent to assignment of the property and mismanagement.

Consumer Credit

Christopher is regularly instructed in a range of consumer credit matters. He is also a contributor to Butterworths Journal of International Banking and Financial Law.

Instructions include

  • Acting for a lender seeking possession of a commercial property under the terms of a guarantee in a claim raising issues of sham agreements and the business exemption under article 60C of the RAO.
  • Acting for credit card companies in proceedings under the unfair relationships provisions of the Consumer Credit Act 1974.
  • Representing the Defendant in a claim for breach of a merchant services agreement involving issues under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002.
  • Acting for banks in claims for unpaid credit card debts.
  • Credit hire proceedings.
  • Advising in respect of non-commercial agreements.
  • Advising on rights of third party purchasers in relation to fraudulently-obtained vehicle hire-purchase agreements (as a pupil).
  • Advising in relation to judicial review proceedings as a means of challenging decisions of the Financial Ombudsman.

Personal Injury

Christopher regularly advises and acts for claimants and defendants in personal injury claims, including in relation to the 2015 rollercoaster accident at Alton Towers and Beth Tweddle’s accident on the third series of The Jump in 2016. He has particular experience of acting for German and Austrian defendants in such proceedings, including reviewing documents in German and liaising with experts on foreign law.

Court of Protection

Christopher appears regularly in the Court of Protection in a wide variety of proceedings under the Mental Capacity, Mental Health and Care Acts. He has particular experience of the interplay between the Mental Health and Mental Capacity Acts in respect of community treatment orders. He has appeared in the High Court in relation to passport seizure applications, and advised on applications for orders for the protection of vulnerable adults under the High Court’s inherent jurisdiction, revocation of Lasting Powers of Attorney, appointment of deputies and interim injunctions.

Mediation & Alternative Dispute Resolution

Christopher has appeared as junior counsel in international arbitration proceedings under the LCIA rules. He has also appeared as a representative in a wide range of mediation proceedings, achieving successful settlements of claims in fields ranging from pharmacovigilance to exclusions from school and discrimination under the Equality Act 2010. He is also an accredited mediator.

 

Instructing Christopher Adams

If you require help or advice please contact our clerking team

Call +44 (0)20 7583 9020
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Appointments
  • Accredited Mediator

 

Publications
  • Contributor to Butterworths Journal of International Banking and Financial Law, March 2017
  • Contributor to Safety & Health Practitioner, August 2015 (co-authored)
  • Contributor to Safety & Health Practitioner, July 2015 (co-authored)
  • Contributor to the Journal of International Arbitration May 2019
Memberships
  • Commercial Bar Association
  • Health & Safety Lawyers’ Association
  • Administrative Law Bar Association
Education
  • BA in English, Trinity College, Cambridge (Double First)
  • Postgradute Diploma in Singing, Distinction and DipRAM, Royal Academy of Music
  • KA Gesang (Singing), Distinction, Hochschule für Musik, Köln
  • CPE in Legal Studies, Distinction (1st in Year), London South Bank University
  • Astbury Scholar, Middle Temple
  • Excellence Award, BPP Law School
  • Routledge Cavendish Book Prize for Best Performing Student, London South Bank University
  • BPTC, BPP Law School
  • ADR Group Accredited Civil & Commercial Mediator
Regulatory Information

All members of Chambers are registered with the Bar Standards Board of England and Wales. For our standard contractual terms click here.

Bar Council Number: 63295

VAT Registration Number: 248 8321 84

Legal Status: Barrister

Professional Insurance: All members of Chambers have professional liability insurance provided by the Bar Mutual Indemnity Fund Ltd. Territorial coverage is world-wide and subject to the term of the Bar Mutual. Click here for details.

Regulated by the Bar Standards Board.

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